Saturday, July 14, 2007: 9:15 AM-10:45 AM
Challenges in Providing Evidence-Based End-of-Life Care to Nephrology Patients
Learning Objective #1: discuss the evidence supporting delivery of end-of-life care in patients with end stage renal disease
Learning Objective #2: identify the key components that need to be considered in developing evidence-based guidelines for end-of-life care
The seniors of today and tomorrow constitute a larger proportion of the population than in any previous generation. Moreover, in North America the vast majority of seniors (approximately 70%) die in hospital. This highlights the need for improving delivery of care in acute care hospitals at end of life. Palliative care has long been recognized as an integral part of cancer care. Research is beginning to move beyond oncology programs to include chronic non-malignant conditions such as end stage renal disease. Clinical practice guidelines have been developed in the United States and United Kingdom to assist nephrology teams in end-of-life care. Included in the guidelines is recognition of the importance of involvement of palliative care specialists. Specialists in palliative care offer expertise in pain and symptom management in addition to psychosocial support for patients and families. While traditionally these skills are applied in oncology settings, many of them can also be utilized in the management of patients with non-malignant illnesses. Elderly patients with end stage renal disease on life-sustaining dialysis treatments present particular challenges at the end of life. In the acute care setting of a large tertiary teaching hospital we have developed a collaborative approach between palliative care and nephrology advanced practice nurses. Through this initiative we have jointly been able to assist patients and their families agree upon a palliative care plan, built around their individual needs and preferences. Through collaborative research, use of evidence-based practices and sharing of knowledge, nurses across specialties contribute to the enhancement of end-of-life care for nephrology patients.
Organizer:Gillian Brunier, MScN, RN, CNeph(C)
 Improving end-of-life care for elderly dialysis patients
Gillian Brunier, MScN, RN, CNeph(C)
 Joining forces to improve end-of-life care: a nursing collaborative involving nephrology and palliative care
Patricia Daines, RN, MN, CHPCN(C)
 Palliative care guidelines to improve care for patients with end-stage renal disease
Kalli Stilos, RN, BScN, MScN, CHPCN(C)